Friday, April 29, 2005

Ask not for whom the phone rings...

So here we are (or to be precise I am), another weekend looming ahead. 'Looming' is too strong a word, it is more like the weekend is grinning shamelessly at me and daring me to have fun and clean up the house and remember to run all the errands that need to be run and make all the phone calls that I have been procrastinating over.
Don't get me wrong, calling up friends and family is not really a chore. I do however feel like screaming and hiding when the phone rings on Sunday mornings. The thing is that when friends and family live far far away, the telephone call once a week is pretty important. However consider now the fact that all the people I 'should' speak with at least once a week by rights, are a phone call rather than a cab-ride away these days. Hence the scrambling to keep up with everyone and the guilt that comes with postponing those calls.
Hence also the empty replies to the same questions from parents, sister-in-law, best friend from sixth grade, cousin who lives in Singapore, friends from Grad school(s) and ex who is a friend. How is everyone doing? How about [insert suitable names]? Yes the weather is nice and oh I saw a great movie and work is busy but nothing new. Nope nothing new with my life. Yes I am fine and I will call next week. Bye now.

P.S.: To all my lovely friends and family who read this blog, please do not take this personally! I love you all and no calls would be a far worse state of affairs than what I describe above...

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Another boring one

The weekend was rather interesting if busy. I did a bit of theater duty and some moving chairs and tables and cases of soda / beer / wine duty for the Indian Film Festival in LA. I did get to see a couple of excellent documentaries too. Asian Vibes Bombay was about the Bombay music scene. It delved into the remix craze, DJs, 'jhankaar beats' on Bombay autos as well as a crazy French singer who sings old Bollywood songs! Sunset Bollywood was about one-film wonders in the Bombay industry and focused on Kumar Gaurav, Rahul Roy and Bhagyashree. See Swati's blog for lots more fun details about the festival.
I moved to a hotel on Monday morning for a couple of days (paid by landlord) as my apartment building is getting fumigated for termites. Every bit of unsealed food in the house had to be double-bagged in special bags. Eh, not fun. On the brighter side I get to eat $80 worth of IHOP food. (For the sarcasm-impaired, that also is not fun.)

Friday, April 22, 2005

This post cannot justify its existence.

I have been wondering what to write about - the Indian Film Festival that I am volunteering for this weekend, or that my best friend's significant other is moving to my town for an unforeseen amount of time on a project or that the political theater in this country is fascinating?
Nah, I will be lazy and just not write anything.

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Aasmaan pe hai khuda, aur zameen pe hum...

Thalassa and I went to see a documentary on the life of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan (that link opens with music so be careful) at the Skirball Center.
What a disappointment! How can you make a bad documentary on a person who was so wellknown for his art yet so unknown in most other ways? Well, you throw in a lot of needless 'exotic' subcontinent shots without explaining their contextual relevance (if there ever was one). Mix in a big dollop of nephew who sings like Cacofonix but has taken over the mantle so must be good. Top off with the 'oh they treat women so shamefully' cherry and there you have it.
In the filmmakers' defence it must be said that they talked to a lot of interesting people, but they used the interview clips like in a preview - to tantalise and never reach a conclusion. And please for pete's sake what has a five minute shot of bhang being mixed got to do with anything at all??
P.S. The title for this post is not particularly relevant - its just the song that I am listening to right now.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Some random thoughts that pop in and out of my head...

Not to get too philosophical on a lovely sunny day - but where is home? When I think of 'home' it is not my current residence - however much I fill it up with all the paraphernalia that is me and mine - that I think of. It is not where I have spent most of the last decade of my life - a small town many miles away - even though it is filled with friends.
Funnily enough, even the house I grew up in - where my parents still live today, and where I go back every long vacation - is very unlike the home I remember in my subconscious. That house had a terrace on the first floor (you know, the one above the ground floor) where I sat in the sun on lazy winter afternoons, reading old puja barshikis and eating oranges. This house has empty rooms where the terrace once was. My grandmother grew petunias and dahlias in clay flowerpots on the terrace. Incidentally I destroyed quite a few of those pots while learning to ride a bicycle - shades of things to come. My grandmother passed away a few years back and those dahlias are gone too. I wonder what happened to the flowerpots.

Friday, April 08, 2005

Its a beauuuuuuutiful day out there...

I am at work but I plan to leave around 4:30 PM (in about 30 minutes) and get two and a half or more hours of sunshine - maybe on the beach or near the Santa Monica Promenade!!
I was at work until pretty late last night - however the result was that I got a lot of stuff cleared and as of this moment have nothing to do!!! Given that I am working with an East Coast office and they have all gone off from work already, I am freeeeee... "As free as the wind blows" and so on.
I was not meaning to be quite so effusive but I am feeling rather happy and so off I go. Maybe I shall watch Melinda and Melinda tonight or sometime this weekend?
I do need to join my Yoga class again. Oh and finish reading Shadow of the Wind - I am so embarassed at having finished only about a hundred and fifty pages since I last posted about the book. However that is all thats on my to-do list for this weekend. [BIG GRIN]

Sin City

I am apparently on a minor dark/graphic novel based movie trip. I watched Blade and Sin City back to back and I have a DVD of Dark City lying around unwatched as yet in my living room. I enjoyed watching both the movies although Sin City was if anything 'cooler' than Blade. It is pretty amazing as an adaptation of a graphic novel to the cinematic form - every so often there are frames in the movie that quite clearly hark back to its comic book origins. It is also really good film noir with the typical hard-boiled and cynical voiceovers and beat up old cars. The sad thing though is that I never quite got emotionally invested in any of the characters, other than maybe Marv. I was too busy gawking at how beautifully made it was - for the lack of better words. Very good cast too - *SPOILER alert* although the Hartigan-Nancy story line has a bit of an ewww factor to it (life resembles art?).

Oh and the thing is - movie ta office kete dekhlum - shokale was not feeling well - tai office jai ni. Tarpor dupure mone holo bhaloi to achhi and so... Sshhhhh!

*More SPOILER Alert* By the way did anyone else feel that Elijah Wood's character was a sly take on Charlie Brown - because of the sweater?

Monday, April 04, 2005

My neighbor thinks I am starting a rock band...

So I got home on Friday and found a notice on my door from Fedex, advising me of a package that they had left for me next door. I duly went and rang Delores' doorbell. She is a sweet lady, who was quite happy to see me, and showed me the 'package' to pick up.
Now keep in mind that I was expecting a plant stand from Target, something like a smallish table with a round top, so imagine my surprise when I find a big box and a small one. They contain, according to the box a Yamaha keyboard and a stand for it!! The packing slip on the box however insists that it contains a $30 plant stand addressed to me instead of this $300 noise-creating thingy. Does that mean that somewhere in this world there is a mystified (or agonized or frothing at the mouth - take your pick) music lover who has received a tiny little table instead of his precious keyboard?
I called up Target and happily enough found a real human being to talk to within about 45 seconds (at 7:30 PM on a Friday - that is a big deal for a customer-service 800 number!). He was able to organize a UPS pick-up for the damn thing all the while giggling away furiously as was I. Now it does not look like I will be getting my plant stand at all as its not even on Target's website anymore. Will the keyboard playing, music-loving (hopefully) soul return my plant stand and will it then meander its way through the intricacies of an e-tailing operation to me? What if life is even more complex and the plant stand went instead to someone who had ordered (say) an ebony slate pool table?? Who got the pool table then? And finally, why oh why did I not receive an iPod instead, in which case I would have just slunk away quietly and polished my tarnished halo in a corner.